Episode 11 of the hit Freeform series, Grown-ish is titled “Safe & Sound.” This episode centers around on who deserves a safe space on campus. Similar to last week’s episode, which saw two of the background characters taking the lead, “Safe & Sound” pushes Ana (Francia Raisa) to the forefront.
If you remember from the pilot, one of the dorms on Grown-ish is the predominately black Hawkins hall. The dorm hasn’t really been mentioned since the pilot, but it is the home of Aaron (Trevor Jackson). Hawkins is in danger of being shut down, and Aaron being the outspoken scholar that he is, springs into action to save his dorm. Trouble arises when Ana says she wants, a space that is safe as well. Aaron then makes the mistake of thinking that Ana, is referring to her Cuban heritage, but she isn’t, she was referring to conservative women.
Naturally, Aaron uses stats to explain why conservatives in America are safe, and Ana makes the mistake of saying that conservatives have it the toughest. Ana seems to ignore her heritage as well ignoring the plights of the black, Jewish and other communities. Her misunderstanding leads to a war between Aaron and Ana, which escalates to Dean Parker, disbanding all safe spaces on campus.
I have to give credit to the writers for another strong entry in the series. Grown-ish continues to stand out as one of the best-written shows currently on TV. Watching the show, I was reminded of some of the conversations I’ve had with co-workers from different backgrounds in my professional career. Aaron & Ana have been friends for a while, and a small disagreement could end the friendship.
I also enjoyed how the writers initially portrayed Ana as naïve, and later in the episode explain why she sees the world the way she does. It doesn’t make Ana right, but her belief system does make sense. On the contrary, while Ana does show remorse, the writers make the decision not have Ana accept fault. In my opinion, she was wrong for attempting to undermine Aaron’s protest and focused more on herself, which is sometimes a reality in the day and age. Before the episode ends, Zoey (Yara Shahidi) saves the day.
“Safe & Sound” is another great entry in Season 1 of Grown-ish. This episode could efficiently serve as an educational video for high school seniors, on their way to college. It’s ok to be passionate about issues, but never forget others in the world have problems as well. Instead of trying to overtake someone else’s protest, work together to find common ground.
Final Grade B+